GSF adds its thoughts on ‘The Value of Air Cargo’
15 / 03 / 2016
Chris Welsh, secretary general of the Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF) – the trade body that represents national and reginal shippers – has offered his thoughts on the subject of ‘The Value of Air Cargo’, the tag line of IATA’s World Cargo Symposium taking place in Berlin this week between 15-17 March. Adding to IATA director general and CEO Tony Tyler’s thoughts on the same subject also delivered to WCS delegates at the opening of the event, Welsh said that the airfreight industry needs to demonstrate that it offers a top-quality service.
Welsh explained: “Against the backdrop of weak growth in international trade, shippers are looking for even greater value from the air cargo industry. While the industry enjoys traditional benefits of speed over other modes, it needs to ensure that it is worth the premium service cost versus ocean, road and rail.” He continued: “The air cargo product needs to be quicker and slicker in providing end-to-end services. Shippers are calling for door-to-door shipment time to be cut by a half. That means acceleration and implementation of e-commerce and enhanced communications in providing real-time track and trace systems. Customers need to know where their freight is at any point in time. “The announcement by Amazon that it plans to save over US$1 billion annually in its airfreight bill by starting its ‘own account’ airfreight operations is a wake-up call for the air cargo market that it needs to speed up and demonstrate that air cargo is a premium service by adding real value to customers. It is a clear indication that the air cargo industry must be more innovative and customer-focused.” Welsh concluded: “The GSF is committed to working with its industry partners to ensure that the industry has a better understanding of customer needs so that it can provide enhanced value to shippers.”